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Coming up to "our" 3rd Trimester..... what now?

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  • Coming up to "our" 3rd Trimester..... what now?

    So my Wolkentanz I mare who is in foal to Weser Ems Manchester City is coming up to her 3rd Trimester (she is due late May)

    I have read many books on mares/foals/etc but just wanted to get a feel for what COTHers think should be things to consider/due/watch for.

    Right now Soph is looking great, is happy healthy etc. She will be moving to a pasture situation in the next month, and i am worried about Fescue.... How do I find out if this is a concern? Locals? do you keep your mares off pasture the last 3 months?

    I am working with my vet to ensure she is getting everything she needs but still I love info so would love to hear what folks have to add

  • #2
    Where are you located? Not sure I would put a mare that's not used to full turn-out in a situation like that as she's approaching her last trimester. Do you want her to foal outside? And yes, fescue can be a concern and it's something the barn/pasture owners should be able to answer.

    Need more info in order to answer more completely....
    Siegi Belz
    2007 KWPN-NA Breeder of the Year
    Dutch Warmbloods Made in the U. S. A.


    • #3
      Will your mare be put in with other horses in this new situation? If so, will they be mares at around the same stage of gestation?
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      • #4
        She should be eating like a hoover by now, but just work/ride her as she wants. About 8 months the belly starts to get in the way and they can't canter very well.

        I don't think there's much fescue around here to worry about. ASk you BO and look it up on the internet. I think it's much less of an issue here than other parts of the country. If you are going to change her living situation and she's not in pasture now, now is the time to do it. Who will she be out with?

        I don't know about your mare, but mine was all for exercise right up to the end. She was running like a wild mare day of foaling both times. She also was so big barreled she never looked huge unless you looked at the right angle. She will really start ramping up what she eats, usually. At the end, I added Calf Manna to give that extra protein.


        • Original Poster

          it's my place right now she is stalled for 6 hours and then out in a big paddock that doesn't have much grass.... we are building her "nursery" which is about 2 acres of new pasture. the grass is about 2" high at the moment. Once run in and fencing is done the plan is for her to be turned out the appropriate amount of time each day so that eventually she could be out there full time.

          She will foal at the vets - or at least that is the plan. I will take her there 2 weeks before foaling (or whatever vet recommends) then she will come back home.

          I dont think she will be with anyone else. Just her and baby.... If i could find someone in a similar situation i might consider sharing my pasture....

          i had this all planned out and then remembered about fescue... so now i am not sure - if fescue is an issue and if that pasture has it i will need to rethink....

          eta: Northern CA.... and yes, she is starting to eat! and look pregnant her blanket didnt fit anymore!

          oh and she is on the tail end of rehab so is not in work at all... so she has the life of luxury


          • Original Poster

            oh and for feed she gets 1 flake Alf + 1 flake grass AM, 1 Flake grass lunch, and a pile o hay for her nite time turnout. She also gets 1.5 lbs of TDI Super Supplement. She looks really good. shiny, fat and happy.


            • #7
              Sounds like a good situation in general. The thing about fescue is whether it was planted with endophyte free seed or not. I'm not sure how you'd go about identifying it if you didn't plant it yourself, but maybe start by asking your County Ag extension, and if you are in California, try asking at UC Davis if you can send samples for testing?
              Last edited by Indy-lou; Jan. 20, 2013, 03:18 AM.
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              • #8
                There are ways to test the fescue. I did a quick search and this came up: http://www.ncagr.gov/plantindustry/s.../Endophyte.htm.
                I didn't see anything that came up right away for California, but since Oregon grows a lot of grasses for seed commercially, there might be resources there, but you can certainly send samples anywhere.
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                • Original Poster

                  The pasture has not hsd any horses on it in 20 years i guess. it is also not seeded - it is just raw pasture.... i can't seem to find anything on fescue toxicity in California and my vet never mentioned it. i will call him and ask him specifically on monday.

                  also, to alleviate any concern - she was out on pasture for the last year and only moved to a dry lot a month ago while we build her nursery.... and we will acclimate her back to the grass before she lives out there 24x7...

                  what kind of concentrate do folks feed to their mares once that need arises? my vet said to start feeding her concentrates soon and ramp it up as needed.....

                  suggestions? i would prefer to stay off of a sweet feed but i will do what ever she needs.


                  • #10
                    We start increasing protein around month 8, and make sure to feed all necessary vitamins/minerals - I use LMF Super Supplement. Then 2 months pre-foaling, I add Farnam Mare Plus, and continue that through lactation. Balancing calcium and phosphorous is important, so if you use alfalfa to ramp up protein, you need to increase phosphorous as well.

                    UC Davis will test your pasture. Generally fescue is not an issue in Nor-Cal. One thing to be aware of - some hay dealers do sell Sudan hay - that can also cause abortions, so keep away from anything with Sudan in it - apparently it is a very drought tolerant hay, so a few growers are using it.

                    I'm guessing your vet is recommending concentrates to increase protein intake? Ask him/her. We re-seed our pastures every 2 or 3 years - good quality pasture is often a better alternative then lots of concentrates - and luckily, the only time of year we have good quality pasture (due to lack of water in much of CA) is early and late Spring. Aka pre-foaling and first few months of lactation season


                    • Original Poster

                      thanks. so it sounds like i am good so far. I do use LMF Super Supplement G (altho i did say TDI earlier) she also of course has a red salt block.

                      Can i increase her RB to more than 1.5lbs/day? would that work for extra protein?

                      also, she gets like 1 or 2 flakes of Alf a day i started doing that because of her injury but she seems to really be thriving on having it in her diet ....

                      we are feeding orchard grass so i will be sure we dont get Sudan - what does it look like? is it being mixed with Grass hay?

                      vet said increase concentrates as needed for caloric intake....


                      • Original Poster

                        just want to bump this to see if anyone else has anything i am missing?


                        • #13
                          I have increased RB to six pounds a day in the case of a 17.2 hand lactating broodmare, so yes, it can be done. By the time my mares are ready to foal they typically get around 4 pounds of RB a day plus whatever supplements you want to add.
                          Siegi Belz
                          2007 KWPN-NA Breeder of the Year
                          Dutch Warmbloods Made in the U. S. A.


                          • #14
                            Siegi, Which RB do you feed?
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